Fuel Saving Tips
Don’t Drive Miles Out Of Your Way For Cheap Gas
Unless it is radically cheaper than the stations close to you. I check online at www.gasbuddy.com to see who has the cheapest gas and it is usually Costco, about 10 minutes from my house. I go there about once a week anyway so I never drive there just to buy gas. If you have to drive a long distance to get the cheaper gas, you’ll be wasting that much time and money, plus burning more gas, just to get there and back. If the difference in price is only a few pennies, it might not be worth it. I just looked online, and the difference today between my closest station and costco is .25 a gallon – definitely worth the drive.
Keep Your Tires Inflated
Under inflated tires are bad for your gas mileage so keep checking and making sure they are holding the right air pressure. You’ll find the optimum tire pressure in your car’s owner manual or on a sticker in the door jamb. You’ll improve your gas mileage by over 3 percent by keeping the tires properly inflated.
Everybody is in such a rush these days, and I’m always amazed when I’m doing the speed limit in the right lane when people go whizzing by only to slam on the brakes and be at the same light as me. I once drove through town, stopping at every light beside the same Maserati. The driving pattern of speeding, slamming brakes and stomping on the accelerator, burns a lot more fuel than driving at the speed limit, watching the road ahead, anticipating the lights, and coasting to a stop. You can also make your brakes, tires, engine, and drive train last longer. I’m sure Mr. Maserati isn’t too concerned about the price of gas, but everybody should be concerned about waste.
When you drive fast because you’re late, you should really do the math on how much time you’ll save.Chances are, by driving 10 over the limit you’ll only get there 2 or 3 minutes faster. For the extra gas you’ll burn, the danger you are putting yourself and others in, and the stress added when you see drivers like me, going slow and meeting you at every light, ask yourself if it’s worth it.
Turn off the Engine
While waiting at long red lights or in drive through lines, turn off the engine. There are a few intersections that I get stuck at every once in a while, and I know if I get there just as it turns red, I’m going to be idling for a few minutes. I watch the crosswalk countdown so I know when to start my engine again.
Look Ahead and Anticipate
One place we can avoid wasting a lot of fuel is in traffic. If you pay attention to the traffic ahead, you can avoid heavy braking and accelerating. Driving more smoothly minimises the wear on your car and is safer because you are paying close attention to what’s going on ahead. Leaving a little room between your car and the car ahead gives you space to take your foot off the gas and coast when traffic slows down instead of braking hard.
Grant Holt is an engineer and car professional who works for Nissan and loves to write about fuel efficiency in his free time.
Photo Credit: bcbusinesshub